Friday, June 29, 2007

Live Large Now, and To Hell With The Future

Dr. Drew Richardson has a solid Op-Ed piece in today’s Staunton News Leader ("Our focus should be on fair taxes, not no new taxes"). The basic point is that the “debate” over the so-called “no-tax” pledge made by local candidate Scott Sayre and discussed recently in the press by Delegate Chris Saxman, is a phony debate. The real question should be how to make taxes more fair and in the piece he cites comments by Warren Buffett, one of the richest men in the world, in which he expressed surprise at how low his tax rate is, even lower than his employees. If we could fix that aspect of the system, we wouldn’t need to worry about phony pledges.

But more than that, in addition to a focus on fair taxation, we need to look at the quality of expenditures. Government expenditures, fueled by tax revenues, should be considered investments. We can all agree that money shouldn’t be flushed down the toilet. That’s bad for the environment anyway. But we should applaud when Government makes expenditures that will pay rewards in the future, whether the rewards are reaped by the next generation or the one after that. Those who advocate cutting Government to the bone are really saying that they aren’t interested in the well-being of society as a whole – they want to live large now and to hell with the future. Given what we’ve seen from George Bush, I’m beginning to think that’s the motto of the Republican Party.

(Cross-posted at Cobalt 6)

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